Dear St. Lukers,
He said: I love you, Lord, my strength. The Lord is my solid rock, my fortress, my rescuer.
My God is my rock—I take refuge in him! He’s my shield,
my salvation’s strength, my place of safety. – Psalm 18:1-2
I have never spent so much time on the computer in meetings as I have this week. We have had district meetings, clergy and lay meetings across the state, leadership staff have met daily, worship team has met daily, lay leaders from each of our councils and stewardship met – all of it on Zoom conferences on the computer or phone. We may not be in the office all together, but there is much work being done as we move through this time.
But I admit. It’s not the same. I miss people. I miss hugging hello. I miss tapping someone on the shoulder when we laugh. As an extrovert – the people connection in real space is something I didn’t know I needed until moments like these. For me, I recognize that being around people is a way for me to feel the comfort of God. I mourn the loss of these moments with all of you, as I mourn all of us in the world going through this devastating and fearful time.
And so, our work is to strengthen the interior of our souls, fortifying with prayer, scripture and finding safety in God. I wish I could take this away for all of us, as a solutions person, I want to fix it, like many of you do as well. But while I can’t make this go away, I can continue to pray for you, for your families, for your jobs, employees, revenue and bills, for your children, for your worry and anxiety, for you to find peace, comfort and new ways to feel connection. All of your clergy and staff are praying and here for your needs and concerns. You can click here to share your prayer concerns.
If you have an emergency and need care, remember our emergency number is 407.876.4991 ext. 316 or you can reach any of us via email or at our phone extensions listed here.
Please join us for worship live on Sunday at 9:30 a.m. and access all of our worship and devotion videos by clicking here (a Facebook account is not required).
As we keep with guidelines recommended of no gatherings with more than 10 people, our services will be live with your clergy and music from both previous worship services, or recorded in St. Lukers homes. We will creatively share with you the Psalm of solace so familiar, but taking on new meaning these days, Psalm 23. Please use this psalm as your prayer time until Sunday as we consider new ways we are being led by the great Shepherd.
Tomorrow we will send out a schedule of online connection opportunities for all ages, as well as the Ministry Guide, packed with ways you can serve and share support for our congregation and community.
We are trying to find new ways to be with you, so if you have ideas please let us know. These are new waters we are chartering and we are going off the map for many of us. We ask for your patience and grace as we seek out new ministry opportunities and make decisions daily as news continues to come to us. Again, if you need any help connecting digitally call 407.876.4991 ext. 216 or if you have care needs call ext. 262.
Praying for all of you and those around the globe as we find our strength and safety in God who is our refuge and care.
With much love and grace,
St. Luke’s Online Schedule:
SPECIAL ONLINE EVENTS
Sunday, March 22 at 1:15 p.m.: “Discover St. Luke’s” online class – this gathering is for potential new St. Luke’s Partners (members) and anyone who would like to connect online and learn more about our core values, mission, and vision, and meet each of our ministry leaders. (click here to register and for login instructions)
Sunday, March 22 at 7:20 p.m.: Candlelight Vigil for Hope – join us live on Facebook for a time of Scripture, prayer, and community with Pastor Jenn
12:00 p.m.: Scripture, prayer, and community with a special guest live on Facebook
Sunday/Wednesdays at 5:00 p.m.: Mini messages from your St. Luke’s Youth Directors on St. Luke’s Youth Facebook page
Monday-Thursdays at 9:00 p.m.: Breathing Space with Pastor Melissa – prayer, Scripture, study, and community via Zoom (click here)
ONLINE SUNDAYS (starting March 22)
6:00 p.m.: High school youth “talk back” session via Zoom (email email@example.com for login information)
ONLINE MONDAYS (starting March 23)
6:30 p.m.: Mere Christianity book study with Pastor Jenn via Zoom (either call to join by dialing 929-205-6099 or join online by clicking here and use the Meeting ID: 606 408 060) (click here to get the study guide)
ONLINE TUESDAYS (starting March 24)
3:00 p.m.: Check-in for youth live on St. Luke’s Youth Instagram page
4:00 p.m.: Check-in for youth parents live on St. Luke’s Youth Facebook page
ONLINE WEDNESDAYS (starting March 25)
6:00 p.m.: Middle school youth virtual small groups via Zoom (email firstname.lastname@example.org for login information)
6:30 p.m.: The Passion Play book study with Pastor Bill via Zoom (either call to join by dialing 929-205-6099 or join online by clicking here and use the Meeting ID: 350 371 4675 with the password: Passion)
ONLINE THURSDAYS (starting March 26)
10:30 a.m.: Women’s Bible study with St. Luker Beth Whitten via Zoom (either call to join by dialing 929-205-6099 or join online by clicking here and use the Meeting ID: 372 179 714)
4:00 p.m.: High school youth Virtual Café via Zoom (email email@example.com for login information)
7:00 p.m.: An Altar in the World book study with Pastor Jenn and her Sisters of the Soul via Zoom (either call to join by dialing 929-205-6099 or join online by clicking here and use the Meeting ID: 606 408 060)
ONLINE WEDNESDAYS (starting April 15)
6:30 p.m.: Stranger Things: Faith and Science in Dialogue, with Dr. Ryan Bonfiglio, Assistant Professor in the Practice of Old Testament at the Candler School of Theology via Zoom (click here to register – $25 registration fee)